Use a paint roller and paintbrush to apply primer to the wall paneling. High-quality primers like Kilz (see Resources) will provide good primer coverage to all types of paneling, even slick, high-gloss paneling. However, if you are using a lower-quality, generic primer, you'll most likely need to degloss the paneling first using a liquid deglosser (see Resources).
Wait for the primer to dry. This will typically take at least 1 hour, but you should always consult the primer container for the most accurate drying times.
Begin refinishing the surface by brushing on latex paint for a more contemporary color and sheen. Paint that dries with a "satin finish" is typically preferred for most projects, but any type of finish will work since you've properly primed the surface.
Begin roller painting the major surfaces of the wall only after you've painted hard-to-reach areas and deep paneling grooves with a brush, as recommended by DoItYourself.com.
Apply a second coat to touch up bare spots when necessary.
Allow at least 24 hours for the newly refinished walls to dry.
Things You Will Need
- Primer Paint brush Paint roller Liquid deglosser Latex paint
- In most cases, refinishing the walls with a simple paint job works to update the room and add color to the space. However, if you want to completely mimic a drywalled look, DoItYourself.com explains that you apply plaster to the grooves in the paneling for a smooth, solid-wall appearance. This technique, however, is very time-consuming and is more costly than repainting.